Letís start with a brief introduction to Apple Passbook. Apple Passbook is an iPhone application, introduced in iOS6. Itsí central idea is to
replace all plastic and paper material that people store in their wallets: coupons, loyalty cards, tickets, etc. with just one application that
stores all of these (collectively called "passes") on userís iPhone.
When created, Apple Passbook was meant to be used by brick-and-mortar businesses. Most of its features are targeted towards presenting passes
at real physical locations: a store, a movie theater, an airport. The passes have build-in barcodes meant to be scanned at POS. The reminder feature,
that puts passes on userís lock screen when they are relevant, can be set for location only (for cases when user approaches a store for which he
has a coupon), or location and date / time (for example when person approaches a movie theater and the show is about to start). There is no way to
set reminder for date / time only Ė the feature that would be useful for ecommerce store to remind users that coupon they have in their Passbook
is about to expire.
...people are coming up with various
[Apple Passbook] uses that were not intended by the application creators
Does it mean that Apple Passbook is not useful for online businesses? Not really - as it often happens, people are coming up with various
uses that were not intended by the application creators. One of the first companies who adopted Apple Passbook was American Express, and they
use it for creating passes through which customers can monitor account information. It is a really creative use that clearly falls outside original
What can online businesses do with Apple Passbook? One of the first ideas that comes to mind - use it to create individual customer experience.
Instead of sending the same offers to all customers who once purchased something and happen to be on e-mail list, let customers select what they are
interested in. Create multiple Passbook cards that are devoted to different lines of products, and let customers select which card to download - this way
they will receive only relevant information. Use update feature of Apple Passbook to send new updates to each card: new coupon, sale information, product
updates. Once user downloaded the card, he will receive push notification on his iPhone, and his card will be updated with the new information in real time.
This way of communication with the customers can be a good alternative to e-mail marketing -
at least it will be something new that people did not get tired of yet.
Apple Passbook pass generation tool promoCard can help you not only with creating and updating of
Apple Passbook passes, but with getting relevant passes to your customers (based on what they are searching for on your site, what is in their shopping
cart or what they had purchased).
Another option is to let your customers design Apple Passbook compatible gift card on your web site, and e-mail them to intended recipient.
This will give your customer an opportunity to create an individualized gift card with custom message, image and design - which is much more
exciting than just sending a number.
Opportunities are endless, as long as you are creative and think outside of the box.